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Greg Mulholland Praises Breathing Space Volunteers and Raises Issue of Children’s Mental Health in Indebted Families

April 11, 2017 2:48 PM

Leeds North West MP Greg Mulholland MP spoke in a Westminster Hall debate on the Breathing Space scheme and thanked all of the volunteers who help to run the scheme and help families in debt. If fully implemented, the Breathing Space scheme would see people who seek advice for debt problems given a period of six months to a year in which interest and charges are frozen and enforcement action halted. The scheme is backed by the Step Change debt charity and also the Children's Society who produced a report on the effects that being in an indebted family can have on a child's mental health.

The scheme would also give individuals and families time to seek advice on taking control of their finances and chance to agree a realistic process of paying off their debts.

Greg also took the opportunity to raise the specific point of the impact that being in a family that is struggling with debt can have on the mental health of children. The stress that can be generated

GM TS Breathing Space

Greg with Breathing Space supporter Tony Sutcliffe

for a child can lead to affects such as falling behind at school, something which can then have a lifelong impact. This is supported by the he Children's Society who produced a report on the issue of children's mental health within indebted families.

Commenting, Greg Mulholland MP said,

"It was really important that I took the chance to thank the volunteers, in Leeds and elsewhere. They give their time to run a really excellent charity which offers not only advice but genuine support to families who are genuinely desperate. I'm proud to speak up for people who give their time to help others and the Breathing Space Campaign is a great example of that. I will continue to support the campaign in Parliament and calling on the Government to introduce it."

"The specific point I raised needs looking at also though. As always, mental ill health is invisible and children can be incredibly resilient. We have to recognise the potential effects of the stress that exists in indebted households, especially when parents are having to make awful decisions between paying off debt and providing basic provisions for their children."